Alfonso Cuarón May Wrangle Fantastic Beasts

Update: He won't tackle the Potter prequel


UPDATE: Sadly, we can cross this one off of Cuaron’s To Do List. Speaking to a Spanish news agency (whose report was picked up by Digital Spy), he’s decided not to tackle the film, citing a desire to “clean his palate” after spending years on the effects-heavy Gravity. So the hunt is still on for someone to make the movie…

As Warner Bros. plunges headlong back into the world of Harry Potter with prequel spin-off Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them, the studio recently announced a 2016 release date for the first planned film. To help it reach cinemas, Fantastic Beasts will need a director, and it appears Warners is turning to one of the former Harry helmers, with Alfonso Cuarón reportedly in talks.

Cuarón, who scored a huge hit and a mantelpiece-troubling haul of awards for Gravity, was responsible for giving the Potter franchise a stylish new breath of life with The Prisoner Of Azkaban 10 years ago, opening up the wizarding world and injecting a dash of fresh energy that carried the series through two more directors and five further films. His return to the wizarding world – albeit for an adventure that takes place decades before the young hero ever arrives at Hogwarts – would be welcome, given that he’s shown he has a clear grip on the material and can bring what he’s since learned to the film.

Of course, since Children Of Men and particularly Gravity, Cuarón is in serious demand and can make pretty much anything he wants, but he has a close working relationship with Potter (and Gravity) producer David Heyman, so it’s not tough to see why he might be tempted to return.

Fantastic Beasts, which Potter creator J.K. Rowing is adapting from the book, will follow magizoologist Newt Scamander and his adventures with strange creatures in the early 20th century, probably based out of New York. As mentioned above, the resulting film should be in cinemas by November 2016.